I am not the biggest fan of regular chili, but white chili is a whole different ball game! I was introduced to white chili when I volunteered at a state fair and a chili competition took place right in front of my booth (yay!).  This recipe is really quick, simple, nutritious and flavorful, what more could you ask for?! Nutritionally this chili is high in protein and low in fat!

Southwestern White Chicken Chili


Start by preparing your mise en place. This simply means to get all of you chopping, measuring and can opening ready so that you can throw this meal together. Mise en place literally translates to  “put into place” in French! Your mise en place for this soup includes: chopping chicken breast, dicing red onion and yellow bell pepper, mincing garlic, as well as opening cans of green chilies, fire roasted corn and great northern beans. For this recipe I only gently rinsed the beans, utilizing some of the liquid from the cans! Also measure out garlic powder, red pepper flakes, cumin, chili powder and milk as well as corn starch.


A Note About Chicken

Whenever I make chicken chili I mix up what type of chicken I’m using based on what I have on hand, how much time I have to prepare or how lazy I want to be! This particular time I used raw chicken breast that I roasted in my dutch oven. It was the first time I cooked it like that and it turned out really delicious! Cooking the chicken in a 400℉ oven for about 20 minutes gave the chicken the perfect color and it was super juicy! I simply seasoned with salt and pepper, but go ahead and try out different spices and herbs. You could even coat it with the other spices in the recipe, chili flakes and garlic powder!

Most times when I make this soup I either use a rotisserie chicken that is all ready to go from the grocery store, or I use canned chicken breast! It is an awesome pantry staple that I always have on hand! When there is leftover chicken I add it to quiche, chicken salad, omelettes, slice for salads or sandwiches or toss in taco sauce for, you guessed it, tacos!


Cook It Up

Now that you have some sort of cooked chicken and everything else is ready in your mise en place, lets make chili so we can eat it! Start by heating oil in a dutch oven over medium to medium-high heat. Toss in spices so they can ‘toast’ in the oil. They will become very fragrant! Then add in onions, peppers and garlic. Cook these vegetables for a few minutes until the onion is translucent. The next step is very involved. Pour in all the beans, chilies, chicken, water and broth, put lid on the pot and let simmer on low for 10 minutes!

soup 2

Finish It Up

The last step is whisking the corn starch into the milk. Microwave for 30-60 seconds until it comes to a boil. The cornstarch mixture has to become really hot in order to help thicken up our chili.



This recipe is fun because it is not only quick and easy, but you can add toppings if you’d like, just like red chili! Top with shredded cheese, avocado, fresh cilantro or tortilla strips! I hope you love my version of Southwestern Chicken Chili as much as I do!


Southwestern White Chicken Chili

by Caitilin Perez, RDN




1 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp chili powder

½ tsp garlic powder

½ tsp red pepper flakes

1 tbsp minced garlic

1 medium red onion

1 medium yellow bell pepper

1 can green chilies (4.5 oz)

1 can fire roasted corn, low sodium (15 oz)

2 cans great northern beans

2 large chicken breast, about 12 oz. cooked

4 c low sodium chicken broth

1 c water

1/2 c low fat or non-fat milk

2 heaping tbsp cornstarch



  1. Create mise en place.
  2. Heat oil over medium- medium/high heat. Add cumin, chili powder, red pepper flakes to toast. Once fragrant (about 10-20 seconds) add garlic, onion and bell pepper. Saute until onion is translucent.
  3. Add in lightly rinsed beans and juice, green chilies, corn and chicken. Pour over broth and water. Put lid on pot and simmer for 10 minutes.
  4. Whisk cornstarch into milk and heat in microwave until it boils. About 30-60 seconds.
  5. Stir in cornstarch mixture to chili. Eat up!



Top chili with avocado, tortilla strips, cheese, fresh cilantro or whatever else sounds good to you and enjoy!



Calories: 315

Fat (g): 5

Sodium (mg): 580

Protein (g): 29

Carbs (g):42